Saturday, December 28, 2013

Wordless Weekend: Winter Walk

Painting by Vicki Allesia
Detail of Painting by Vicki Allesia

The cure for holidaze? Nature. A quiet walk in Nature will surely refresh you...

Click here to open in your browser.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Last minute shopping at the very last minute

Please note, Christmas Marketplace closes today at 1pm.
There's still time to squeak in a little last-minute gift buying, or maybe reward yourself with a treasure for being so efficient.

A big thank you to everyone who dropped by, either to say hello to our artists or to complete all your Christmas shopping from the display. Have a very merry Christmas and all the best for the New Year :)

Note: the blog will be running on reduced posting from now until the end of February. The gift shop will still be open though.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Shop early, shop local, shop often ...

A huge thank you to everyone who has supported us this Christmas season and throughout the year. Without you and the support of community, artists find it very difficult to keep going, artistically and financially. Shopping local helps the artists in your midst and also keeps the community thriving.
A big thank you.

The Christmas Marketplace will be open until 1pm on Monday, December 23rd. So check us out today until 6pm, or Saturday (10am to 5pm) or Sunday between noon and 4pm.

Artist-made gifts nourish the soul :)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

On the twelfth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas

After the last bird incident, I'm impressed at his bravery.
Another mathematical gifting conundrum, but if you count carefully - voila! 144 precise papercuts.

And in countdown, my tally this year (aside from broken glass, lacerated fingertips, a stiff neck from the icy blast and the recurring bears nightmare) -

12x12 delicate papercuts
a gift at the eleventh hour
10 tiny leaf veins
9 artful magnets
8 dainty jewellery links
7 cute-but-flown-the-coop chicks
6 tentacular tentacles
5 heavenly bows
4 perfectly squared
3 marauding bears
2 lock and key sets
and an eagle swooping for the turkey (yikes!)

Isn't the partridge meant to come on day 1 though?

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts in all their glory.
PS: We're open later this evening, until 7:30pm for the end of the Arts Centre Silent Auction.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Classy and Classic

Jewelry by Sandra Ho
Necklace by Sandra Ho

All dressed up with, oh, so many places to go....

Experience the Blackberry Artist's Society's Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Hours are Mon.-Fri, 10 am-6 pm, Sat., 10 am-5 pm, and Sun. 12 pm-4 pm.

Click here to open in your browser.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

On the eleventh day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
wire tree decoration by Luci Gimenes

Bandages off today! This meant I could drive, so off I went into town for some Retail Therapy.
Unfortunately, this put My True Love right off track and he completely forgot about his thematic gift giving until almost the last minute. Luckily, the Blackberry Artist Society's Christmas Marketplace is open till 6pm most evenings (5pm on Saturdays; 4pm on Sunday; and until 7:30pm on Thursday, December 19th for the end of the Arts Centre Silent Auction).
At almost the eleventh hour he returned with this beautiful wire tree ornament ... and totally melted my heart.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Monday, December 16, 2013

On the tenth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
green glazed leaf imprint dish by Myrta Hayes

Today's gift was a tiny treasure - ten delicate leaf veins on a ceramic leaf dish.
Maybe he has caught up to this year's anniversary theme after all?

It's just big enough for one set of car keys.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

On the ninth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
art magnets by Elizabeth Wallace

My True Love, since he is now doing all the kitchen prep work on account of my bandaged hands, has noticed how bare and boring our fridge looks.
This was only temporary - today's ninth day of Christmas gift was a package of nine colourful art magnets.
Now I worry I won't be able to get him out of the kitchen at all.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

On the eighth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
fibre and metal bracelet by Sandra Ho

This evening's extremely tiny package was pushed carefully across the silent dining table by My True Love. He then had to help unwrap it as my bandaged fingers couldn't undo the knots.
It was the least he could do, having disbelieved me when I'd shouted that the outdoor birds were mounting a rescue mission with sledgehammers through  the patio windows to release the cute chicks inside.

I forgive him.
The car passenger window is complete once more and I don't have to drive around in a draft.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Friday, December 13, 2013

On the sixth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
watercolour fabric transfer by Amanda Maxwell

Not only mathematical, but fantastical.
Octopuses have eight arms last time I checked wikipedia.
However, My True Love assures me that Port Moody cephalopods are really hexapods.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Tracks in Time is on sale in the gift shop for Christmas too!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Meet Your Makers: Stone Carver Tom Reid

Hand-carved stone cat, by Tom Reid
Hand carved cat by Tom Reid
Take advantage of a very special opportunity this coming Saturday! Blackberry Artist Tom Reid will demonstrate stone carving December 14 from 2:00-4:00 p.m. in the Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Whether he's working with soapstone, BC jade, or other media, Tom is sure to make an impression. This demo will appeal to the whole family. Children will be thrilled to see a shape unfold before their eyes and adults will be intrigued by the process. Just how does someone carve a figure from a chunk of rock? Come on down and find out! While you're at the centre, let us also tempt you with the lovely creations on display in the 3-D Gallery, on the tree in the lobby and in the Blackberry Gift Shop.

Hand-carved stone pig, by Tom Reid
Click here to view in browser.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Sumptuous

Gift bags by Del Holbrook
Christmas Marketplace gift bags by Del Holbrook

Someone's been sewing! Choose handmade gift bags in a variety of sizes, materials, colors and patterns. You're sure to find exactly what you need for every gift.

Experience the Blackberry Artist's Society's Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Hours are Mon.-Fri, 10 am-6 pm, Sat., 10 am-5 pm, and Sun. 12 pm-4 pm.

Click here to open in your browser.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

On the seventh day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
bird drawings by Sarah Ronald

Seven of the cutest chicks around! And of course, My True Love, still mildly in the dog house from the night-before-last's antics, calls me the cutest.
I lined up the birds next to the deck windows and before long they were being admired by a throng of cheeky chickadees hopping around outside for the birdseed.
I swear I could see the 2D birds fluff out their feathers a little at all the attention?

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Monday, December 9, 2013

On the fifth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
intarsia wood wreath by Del Holbrook

Five perfect bows! and an angel.
Everybody needs an angel at Christmas - especially My True Love, who inexplicably locked both sets of keys inside the car last night when we were downtown for a theatre outing.

As I walk away to get a better cell signal for calling BCAA, I hear him exclaim "Let me sort this!" and turn just in time to see him raising a handy lump of sidewalk from the road and hurling it through the passenger window.

At around midnight, when I had managed to sign him out of the police station, he then re-discovered the inside pocket of his new jacket.
This morning it appears that he's shattered the only replacement glass not in stock.
Ho ho ho.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

On the fourth day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
stained glass panel by Margret Billings

Now he's getting mathematical.
This evening's 'fresh from the giftshop' piece was delivered with a flourish and unwrapped in confusion.
"But it's not a four of anything," I cried, puzzled at this sudden departure from festive form.
My True Love sighed, looking a trifle disappointed so I looked down at the beautiful stained glass window hanging once more.
And there it was, a perfect four-by-four sixteen complete squares of glass, neatly and expertly foiled into place.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

On the third day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
carved bears by Tom Reid

On the third day of Christmas, My True Love is most definitely on a Remembrance of Things Past kick - these charming three bears are a great reminder of an interesting hiking encounter out on the trails earlier this year.
My! I didn't know I could beat him climbing over a trellis fence these days! Or that he could scream louder than me.
Oh my!

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Friday, December 6, 2013

On the second day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
ceramic lock by Jan Pavlic Falkenberg

I'm not sure if he's giving me the keys to his heart, or commenting on the fact that I've locked myself out of the car several times this year?
Whatever it is, these are certainly graceful reminders of one or the other.

Check out the other 12 days of Christmas posts as they publish.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Meet Your Makers: Sarah Ronald

Button Making
Button Making by Sarah Ronald

Join Blackberry Artist Sarah Ronald from 2 to 4pm this Saturday, December 7th, for a fun Christmas craft demo.

Bring along your own photo or favourite old Christmas card and make a 2” button for a minimum donation of $2 (all proceeds going to SHARE). Buttons make great gift toppers and fun stocking stuffers!

The demo will be held as part of our Christmas Marketplace show & sale, on the main floor of the Port Moody Arts Centre.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Little Fellow

Hand-carved BC jade frog by Tom Reid

 Exquisite stone carvings by Tom Reid, large and small...must be seen to truly appreciate....

Experience the Blackberry Artist's Society's Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Hours are Mon.-Fri, 10 am-6 pm, Sat., 10 am-5 pm, and Sun. 12 pm-4 pm.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

On the first day of Christmas ...

the twelve (gifting) days of christmas
Eagle (image on metal) by Stephen Tobin

So, it's been more years than I care to remember since My True Love first started the seasonal inundation with gifts but it's not something that I'm in any hurry to stop.
Certainly, there have been years when the theme left a lot to be desired. For example, we try to forget our third Christmas together - there's only so much leather a gal can deal with (or that's tasteful IMHO). He struggled with the pregnancy-inspired Thai-crabcakes-and-jello fest one year also.
Lately though, he's been a lot more thoughtful about gifting.
Especially with this season's start - he's going big!

A Note to our subscribers: if you are subscribed to the daily newsletters, expect a post every day in your inbox until Dec 22nd. If you'd like to switch to less frequent mailings, look for the Manage Your Subscription link at the bottom of your newsletter and change to the frequency you'd prefer. Please note: the monthly newsletter option has been discontinued. Thank you and happy reading.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Congratulations Urszula Petrykowska!

The Blackberry Artist's Society is incredibly pleased to announce that one of our jewellers, Urszula Petrykowska, has been recognised among Vancouver's creative talents and been awarded the Mayor's Arts Award as an emerging artist in craft and design.
The award itself comes from a nomination by the honouree in that discipline, Dominique Br├ęchault, who personally picked Urszula for the nomination.
Congratulations Urszula!
Urszula's unique and inspiring work can be seen in the gift shop during marketplace hours of 10am to 6pm, Monday to Friday (to 5pm on Saturday, and between 12 noon and 4pm on Sundays) until 1pm on December 23rd.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Meet Your Makers: Saturday artist demo — Pauline Doyle

Pauline Doyle, Port Moody Arts Centre Ceramics Department
Pauline Doyle making soft boxes in the ceramics studio
Christmas ornament by Pauline Doyle
Christmas ornament by Pauline Doyle
You're invited to the Christmas Marketplace this Saturday to watch artisan Pauline Doyle as she works with that most malleable of materials: clay. Pauline is very approachable and interactive and her demo will be a delight. A little magic water, some hand building and voila! Mark the date and time on your calendar... Saturday, November 30th, from 2-4 p.m. It’s a fantastic way to introduce children to ceramics as art. Who couldn’t relate? After all, making mud pies is only a step away from working with ceramics. Adults, as well, will be intrigued, as they watch Pauline demonstrate techniques and the creative use of materials. She likes to experiment with the idea of ‘softness’ and it is a concept that make Pauline’s work unique.

While you’re there, check out our gorgeous tree, the gift shop and 3-D gallery to find more things to enchant you… 

To view this story in your browser, click here.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Iridescence

Ceramic vessel by Pauline Doyle

Come enjoy the lovely work of Pauline Doyle: vessels and soft boxes, beautiful ornaments.

Experience the Blackberry Artist's Society's Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Hours are Mon.-Fri, 10 am-6 pm, Sat., 10 am-5 pm, and Sun. 12 pm-4 pm.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Christmas Marketplace created with you in mind

(Click here to read the article and see the slide show in your browser.)
  • Who?  You!
  • What?  Blackberry Artist’s Society's 17th Annual Christmas Marketplace
  • Where?  Port Moody Arts Centre, 2425 St Johns St., Port Moody, BC
  • When?  Open daily through Dec. 23rd — Mon.-Fri.: 10 am - 6 pm, Sat. : 10 am - 5 pm, Sun.: 12 pm - 4 pm
  • Why? Shop local; buy handmade…. 
ChristmasornamentsIt was a frosty day…one of our first. Glittering ice crystals everywhere…on the sidewalk, edging the leaves, on the tall grass. It was the perfect day for me to head to Port Moody City Hall to take photographs of a Blackberry Artist's Society display highlighting our 17th Annual Christmas Marketplace. The slide show above gives you a glimpse of what’s in store for you at the full exhibition and in our gift shop at the Port Moody Arts Centre. The centre is housed in a beautiful example of classic Arts and Crafts-style architecture, a bungalow writ large. High ceilings and much ambient light make it the perfect setting for a Christmas Marketplace. Every piece glows, no matter the time of day, whether you are gazing at warp and weft, brush stroke, vitrified glaze, polished stone, wood, paper, rendering, precious metal, glass, or captured image. A sensory extravaganza! Next to it is the centre’s Christmas tree, full of handmade ornaments at very reasonable prices. In fact, each piece being shown at City Hall or in the centre’s 3-D gallery or Blackberry Gift Shop is conceived of and created by talented artisans. They not only love what they do, they are active members in their art co-op, each assuming roles needed to make the society and gift shop run. And a member will warmly greet you the moment you step inside the shop…. So, whether you’re breezing by the display at City Hall, or at the centre to see the tree or exhibitions, make sure you take the time to linger in our Christmas Marketplace and gift shop, which are filled with marvelous goodies. Not only will you see paintings, drawings, photography, jewelry, ceramics, but also weavings, stained glass, paper and fiber art, intarsia, and carved wood and stone. Every medium. Brighten your day and fill your heart with the loveliness of it all!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Let's sit by a cozy fire and read!

Handmade paper bookmarks by Joan Marr
Treasures to be found, including Joan Marr's amazing handmade paper and fiber art! 

Experience the Blackberry Artist's Society's Christmas Marketplace at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Hours are Mon.-Fri, 10 am-6 pm, Sat., 10 am-5 pm, and Sun. 12 pm-4 pm.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Silky Elegance

Hand painted silk scarf by Jane Ostenstad
The Blackberry Artist Society's 17th Annual Christmas Marketplace opens Thursday, November 14th at the Port Moody Arts Centre. Many lovely delights to entice, including hand painted silk by Jane Ostenstad.

Please join us for the Opening Reception, which runs from 6pm to 8pm the 14th. 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Lest We Forget

by Vicki Allesia
Not just Flanders Fields and poppies between the rows ...
Not just the grave markers ...
Remember the living survivors and their sacrifice too.

To listen to a CBC White Coat, Black Art podcast about PTSD in Canada's veterans, click here.

Thursday, November 7, 2013


We are open on Sunday, November 10th (12 noon to 4pm) as usual.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Bowl of Treasure

Ceramic bowl by Myrta Hayes, necklace by Luci Gimenes
To see more creations by Blackberry artisans, click here. To view this blog post in the browser, click here.

Please note: the gift shop will be closed from close on Saturday, November 9th until our grand opening reception for Christmas Marketplace at 6pm on Thursday, November 14th.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Christmas Marketplace opens November 14th

Save the date!
Blackberry Artist Society's annual tradition, the Christmas Marketplace opens for business at Port Moody Arts Centre (2425 St. Johns Street) on Thursday, November 14th.
The opening reception starts at 6pm, with invited guests trying out their handcrafted wooden keys to see who will be the lucky one to open the handmade wooden lock holding the gift shop doors closed.
Who will it be?
... see you at the Arts Centre on Thursday 14th?

Artists in attendance | free admission | refreshments and cash bar

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Coy Koi .. whatever

in the agllery - October 2013

Oh I just clapped my hands with glee when I saw the detail on Myrta Hayes' ceramic vessel on display this week.

The puns I could have.

Coy koi?
... and the joke about goldfish being red, not green which only sounds funny if you understand french ...

... which I don't (gasp)

Quelle couleur sont les petits pois? 
Les petits pois sont verts. 
Non, ils sont rouge, le petit poisson rouge.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

On Reflection (it gets in the way)

in the agllery - October 2013

Reflection is a total pain sometimes, and no more so than when trying to capture one of watercolour artist Elizabeth Wallace's beautiful and vibrant compositions.

Sometimes it's too tempting just to rip the back off the painting and click away at the image shelled from under the glass ...

But don't worry. I do restrain myself. All the framing in the giftshop is of highest quality, and untouched by yours truly. Since I can't capture the beauty here, you'll just have to pay a visit in person yourself.

Consider yourself invited!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

October's Featured Artist: Denise Dupre

"Plowed Fields"

Watching the multiple colors from a prism or a piece of crystal or sparkling off a diamond in the sunshine, or noticing a rainbow after the rain, these are what fills me with wonder and joy.

"End of Summer"

"Floating Land Forms"

The full spectrum of color in all of it's beauty is what inspires my paintings.

"In the Fairy's Garden"

I am passionate for color and enjoy fulfilling this passion through my abstract work.   

"Two Roses"
To learn more about Denise Dupre, click here. To open this post in your browser, click here.                                                                                             

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Not so Wordless Wednesday: Cathy Rycroft, Naturalist and Painter

While photographing Cathy Rycroft's exhibition at Port Moody's City Hall today, I was struck by her deep love of the four-legged, finned and feathered. When you look at the eye of an animal she has painted, you can't merely glance; you are captivated by the gaze. It honestly felt as if I was the object of scrutiny! Experiencing a painting like this can only happen if an artist knows his or her subject very, very well.

Cathy's creations feel so natural...depictions of animals painted on wood and stone. You can see the grains and twists in the burled wood and the pattern of the stone, whether crystalline or marble. It's apparent that she chooses the subject for a particular material carefully.

Cathy has been painting for over 20 years and you can find more of her work in the Blackberry Gift Shop in Port Moody. She also paints on canvas and more of her work can be found on her site, Cathy Rycroft: Equine Artist. The slide show above features work currently currently on exhibition at City Hall.

Enjoy the detail in Cathy's work, her knowledge of anatomy, and her ability to animate the creatures she paints.
The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us in contact with the rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit, and fire.   
                                                                             — Sharon Ralls Lemon

Monday, October 7, 2013

Welcome new artist, Stephen Tobin

in the agllery - October 2013

Welcome new Blackberry member, Stephen Tobin, who joined the society last month.
Stephen is a photographer and prints his images onto metal.
They are certainly worth visiting the giftshop to take a closer look.

Like all of us, Stephen will be able to take advantage of more space soon. The annual Christmas Marketplace is coming up at Port Moody Arts Centre. For November and December, the gift shop wanders across the main gallery to take up residence in the 3D gallery at the front of the building. All our artists can spread their wings a little as there is space for even more work.

Opening night is Thursday, Novermber 14th from 6 to 8pm.
See you there for the grand reveal!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

September's Featured Artist: Pat de Couto

September is almost over, and in the back-to-school rush I've had no time to blog about featured artist Pat de Couto's amazing work in the gift shop.
You've seen it previously in the blog but not in the premier spot.
Pat's work is gorgeous. I've watched sculpting the faces that peek out from chunks of driftwood and still cannot get over the amazement of seeing inanimate come to life.
Enjoy the slideshow, and don't forget to visit the shop!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

... last chance to see ...

The sculpture is meant to represent the importance of the railroad in the 100 years of growth of the city, e.g. connecting, forest, mountain and sea to the city (therefore the wrap around of the vessel by the railroad track) I call it “Time capsule of the Port Moody Golden Spike” (this is just symbolic and echoes the yearly Golden Spike event).

The Centennial Exhibition at the Port Moody Civic Centre Galleria closes on September 20th. So hurry on down to check out artist Myrta Hayes' ceramic sculpture shown above.

The Blackberry Artists - we're an inspired bunch!